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  • A High Conviction Idea With 150% Upside [View article]
    This sounds good although not really suitable for my currently retired portfolio. I will look at the site as a potential customer who buys big from Amazon. I also hesitate to own companies where the stock based compensation flows so freely. Stock buy backs tend to disproportionately advantage the insiders at these companies. If someone can counter this thought with some analysis of outstanding share count for OSTK I am willing to listen.
    Aug 8 10:18 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Does QE Finance Government Spending? [View article]
    I thought I had already resigned from this conversation but you did not have the grace to let it go. I already said personal philosophy and political point of view were irreconcilable. A long winded diatribe detailing false history and refuting straw man arguments is uncalled for. You are welcome to your utopian hopes and dreams for New Harmony as long as you leave space for me to opt out. Do it through Google or some such entity to prove your case. Imposing it through the police power of the central government invites a self defense response. I won't even spend time on your "everything before is wrong; this time is different and completely correct" nonsense. The only actual economic fallacy that you cite is the notion that inflation and debt are always linked. This was never claimed and your use of the word always is the weasel word in the sentence. If you mean debt that is contracted but never liquidated by an issuing government, This and other privately circulating trade credit debt can be deflationary if repudiation and bankruptcy are employed. On a net basis the debt is economically no different than printing bills or declaring a positively charged chunk of electronic media to be legal tender for all debts public and private. How I get to be John Birch, who I only vaguely know anything about, will require considerably more elaboration. If you can actually do this you are welcome to try. Otherwise I am content to have exchanges with those who do not arrive with such a large chip on the shoulder.
    Aug 6 10:41 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • It's Time To Short Microsoft [View article]
    This author is a lover of Apple who is viewing things through female glasses. I can see preferring Apple or Google longer term but the author ignores the embedding Microsoft has achieved in business services. Might not be the best company in the stock universe but to suggest a short poition seems to risk more than the potential reward would be worth.
    Aug 6 10:08 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Does QE Finance Government Spending? [View article]
    It seems theories are wrong because you say they are tired. Actually, you are a supporter of common inflation without the inconvenient need to replay any debt. We are rapidly approaching the point where your "theory" will have to reign as the only alternative to the pain that too many people would feel. Congratulations - you will have restored the divine right of kings in the form of our elitist benefactors. Or maybe the muslims will take over. They recognize all interest as usury. One thing is for sure - you are not new, just a wishful thinking, something for nothing booster of ever popular inflationist policies. Asbytec - it is not a wash when the Fed quadruples the size of its balance sheet. It is only a wash if it subsequently reduces it back to where it started. This will never happen. I would be very surprised if they did anything other than make vacuous pronouncements even when their own questionable price measures exceed their own target. My prediction is they will simply say we can still do better on the employment front and hold course until wage rates are finally bid up as customarily happens at the end of the credit expansion cycle. Wage earners will just "catch up" as prices move up faster. The only thing that has been holding back prices this cycle is the internationalization of the work force. Now that that cat's out of the bag we are left with huge numbers of people who feel entitled to live a middle class lifestyle on transfer payments.
    Aug 5 11:07 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Does QE Finance Government Spending? [View article]
    Thankfully for the townsfolk, Wyatt would be none other than I, compuirv. I can hear the children cheering me on.
    Aug 5 10:41 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Does QE Finance Government Spending? [View article]
    I can assure you I have not been left behind. I am doing rather well under the current system which I understand all too well. No sense in exchanging ideas with someone who dismisses mine automatically as simply relics of the past. You feel you know best because, as a member of the more intelligent ruling elite, you get to impose your views on those of us who are incapable of understanding these abstruse concepts. Why there might be math involved or an understanding of PN junctions. Although you did take the time to mischaracterize some of my ideas and provide straw man comments, it would seem our differences ultimately could only be settled at the OK corral. Have a happy life. :-)
    Aug 4 11:00 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Does QE Finance Government Spending? [View article]
    Asbytec - appreciate the comments. To be clear, I did not say I favored less government spending. I said less central government spending. We live in a Federal Republic. If the good people of Santa Monica, CA want to declare a people's republic and fund it with local taxes I would not object. Might even move there myself. They just can't impose it on the rest of the country. I have no problem with spending on national defense at the central level of government and recognize that due to progress in communications and transportation, more activities can properly be led from the center than was the case at the founding of the country. I want these functions to be specifically designated and I want their hands off anything that is not delegated to them. We do disagree on Keynesian approach to fiscal policy, especially without much more limitations in light of its historical application. The theory that you can spend more in bad times and pay back in flush times would be acceptable if there was any evidence over the course of the last 80 years that this would happen. What has actually been happening is that the deficits are run and paid back, not even in full nominal terms, by inflating the supply of "money" and credit to ever higher levels. This is great for the big borrowers like government and big business but toxic for average Joe who wants to claim an increasing degree of sovereignty over his own life. Keynes was right about the stupidity of most people when it comes to monetary affairs. Most are not even interested and I suppose this is as it should be. What this system has actually brought us is an ever increasing class of permanently dependent people whose most valuable function in life is to pull the lever for pandering politicians who lie about how much they care for them. It is mostly the value of the wages of the working stiffs that is being chiseled in order to pay for this group.
    Aug 4 10:46 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Does QE Finance Government Spending? [View article]
    Don't know if you are familiar with the work of William H. Hutt but if you are from South Africa you should check out his work. What you have going on now sounds like corruption gone wild and could end very badly. As much as I appreciate your reasoned opinions I fear what we have are basic philosophical disagreements which come down to political direction. I want to move towards less central government power. You seem to have accepted it as an inevitable result of the passage of time. If this was 100 years ago I might be on your side. From where we are now I am opposed enough to be very close to armed struggle. You don't object to more central planning and are willing to redefine inflation of the money supply as a necessary "tax" to pay for it. To me this is just institutionalized dishonesty made even more insulting by the claim that it is being done in the name of society's disadvantaged. Health care is an emotional issue but I believe we would be much better off if people had to pay the first 2 to 5 thousand dollars from their own funds. Insurance for greater problems would not break our personal banks. As far as government subsidy of progress in this area of health care, I don't believe it is necessary except in the area of communicable diseases. Much technological progress can be said to have come about as a result of the huge military spending but this too, to me, is only worth it in the context of legitimate spending for necessary defense. Much of the weaponry we excel in today is just an expensive frill in the context of today's needs. I admired Reagan for his rhetorical contribution but his tendency to cave in on the financial issues was not acceptable. He was, in many ways, just another skilled, deal making politician much as was President Clinton. I want someone in office like Obama but leading in 180 degree opposite direction. He can be a she, a Black, an Hispanic or a non-muslim Asian but ideology is everything to me. I can allow 20 years for implementation as long as the direction is right. If I was in charge of the euro Greece would be long gone as would other Argentina like profligate countries. France and Italy can be in charge of the junior euro. Thanks again for your correspondence. I wish I could say the current system doesn't seem so bad. Although I am not personally disadvantaged by it I believe the less your interest in money and economy, the more it smells like rotten fish. Maybe you are just one of those who feels warm and fuzzy when the stock market goes up and quickly becomes a cheerleader until the crisis hits.
    Aug 3 02:05 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Does QE Finance Government Spending? [View article]
    You seem to employ a rhetorical technique which I call "yes, but". It is more civil than most in that it seems to grant some small point to your correspondent. Then you shift gears by redefining terms or changing the subject. No, I do not accept the socialized notion of money that can or should be manipulated by central authorities. I majored in economics in college so I am quite familiar with the system as it works today. I came to believe that it is not compatible with our form of government and historic tradition of individual liberty and responsibility. It has transformed us into a Plato's Republic type of society where an elite of guardians is allowed to run society on behalf of the less intelligent citizens. I reject this as do many others. Of course, many university educated persons who have been imbued with this philosophy fancy themselves members of the elite. I am 70 years old and my life experience tells me that large numbers of today's college educated persons are actually less intelligent than many who have chosen another path in life. so that is the direction from which i post my comments. I reject key assumptions made under the current monetary system such as the idea that the Fed is independent from the Government and that the Government is authorized to fill in a blank check to pay for whatever it deems to be in the interest of society at large. Any revenues that accrue to Government that cannot be specifically traced back to an individual or institution cannot be defined as a tax. The idea that any taxes I pay, (presumably you speak only of the central government?) are immediately sterilized into the ether and replaced by another entry so it can't be tracked is nothing more than accounting slight of hand. The enabling of this system took place under the LBJ regime when they first hijacked the social security "trust fund". It is called unified budget accounting. Nixon soon perverted it even further when he declared" we are all Keynesians now" rather than do the hard work of serious monetary reform. By now there is no easy out from this system but it can be done and it needs to be recognized for the dishonest, corruption inviting institution that it is.
    Aug 2 10:47 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Death Of Outside Money [View article]
    I understand how it works and I want it changed. What is so hard to understand about that? Egomania is not good for the soul :-)
    Aug 1 11:11 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Death Of Outside Money [View article]
    The only money in circulation now are pieces of paper that carry with them the fiat that it is to be accepted as payment of all debts public and private. No, I did not know that the Federal Government does not borrow money. I, and most other people, would not simply allow you to redefine the term. The Treasury debt created to repay the loan with principal and interest is theoretically backed by the assets held by the Federal Government. This would include the gold stock if they actually have any of what is claimed as well as the copious land holdings which are substantial. The Fed is merely a confederate in the scheme. If people truly believed that the U.S. Treasury had neither the means nor the intention to ever repay what is lent to them, then the Fed would be the only buyer and we would have what amounts to simple inflation. There is no point in addressing the points made by big wind before and after your posting because he has made it clear that his musings are final and will be enforced against the non-experts as long as he has the guns to make it stick. I don't believe he does.
    Aug 1 11:04 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Does QE Finance Government Spending? [View article]
    The interesting distinction occurs when the gold coin is introduced in the first place. The same could be said of a silver, platinum or copper coin if we choose to employ them also as money. A piece of paper could and has been used as well. The problem with paper is a lack of scarcity. Computer digits are even worse. A check written by a confederate bank to a government that is permitted to spend without first withdrawing the funds from the existing supply of funds has a certain wild and undisciplined charm about it but ultimately is destructive to a society that values objectivity, fairness and honesty applied to all rather than special favors for the supposed experts and the supposed disadvantaged. I will admit that inflation of the supply of exchange media is more popular than deflation of same. I do not advocate inflation or deflation as a policy, only that there be no deliberate monetary policy to induce either one. There should be a slight increase in the value of purchasing media over time as quantities of goods and services grow. This must be offset by increases in the quality of same so as to induce consumers to part with their money.
    Aug 1 10:46 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Does QE Finance Government Spending? [View article]
    I am quite familiar with the system proposed by Antal Fekete. No, we are not "stuck" with the monetary system we have. Were we stuck with the one we had before creation of the Federal Reserve banks? Were we stuck with the National Bank when Andrew Jackson told them to stick it? Were the Republicans stuck with the monetary system when they decided to issue greenbacks to finance the Civil War? That assertion makes my point that this is largely a political battle. Those who most benefit fro the current system propagandize it as a fait accompli and necessary for the protection of poor debtors. I see these assertions as baloney necessary to protect the interests of large debtors. I am somewhat of a moderate when it comes to the details of implementing an objective, rules based system in place of our current subjective system which I believe is corrupt and not compatible with our professed system of government, that is, a Federal Republic.
    Jul 31 11:21 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Does QE Finance Government Spending? [View article]
    I did not say no fractional reserve banking. I said no fractional reserve lending of money which I defined as Treasury minted coin. I just want a distinction to be made between money, which is an asset only, and credit, which is both an asset and a liability right from the start. Its value depends on its quality. Money is simply a weight of a tangible item. It does not change although its exchange value depends on the productivity of the society within which it circulates.
    Jul 31 11:07 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Death Of Outside Money [View article]
    What a mouthful of pedantic verbiage! Much here are legitimate observations. The implication that those who disagree are simply to be dismissed as relics of the past is the utmost in snobbery. To state that we don't have fiat money or that it is accepted because it is freely chosen for its moneyness is demonstrably wrong. Every piece of Treasury issued paper comes with a fiat stating that this note is legal tender for all debts, public and private. If the gas station attendant says he won't accept the paper, I can call a cop and make him change his mind. Most of the transactions in the economy are made with circulation credit. This would be true even if we had free banking, no Fed and a 100% gold coin money system. The disagreements about the best monetary system for the country are chiefly political, not economic. Those who don't want to be centrally herded by means of behavioral economics, group dynamics, social engineering, etc. cannot abide the Fed.
    Jul 30 10:56 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment